Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Follow your mind’s habit

Is decision making best when thought through entirely, or as a gut reaction? Scientists now conclude it is the latter. I wouldn’t really dispute the outcome of the study, but I wouldn’t call it a "conscious" vs. "unconscious" mode (especially the Freudian sort, repressed desire and so on). The mind is disposed a certain way as a result of past thinking and past decisions; it has a character, a habit. So when you go with your gut, you are going with your habit of mind. If that’s good, it is likely the decision will be good. My grandmother knew this, didn’t need a study to be published in Science to know which way was better.

Discussions - 6 Comments

Yes, the irony here is that many of us had reached the same conclusion, but from the gut.

There is a book that is popular with Special Forces right now, that explores precisely this topic. I wish I could recall the title. Recall how Reagan was blasted because he wanted issues and positions put down on a single piece of paper. The media howled that it was more evidence, {if any was needed, they didn’t think it was...} that Reagan was a dolt. I think I saw the book mentioned over at a military blog, www.officersclub.blogspot.com.

Is "Port-gate" an exception to that rule? Who among us, who support the deal, did so when we first heard about it? I know I didn’t.
My gut reaction to this article is that the scientists who drew this conclusion didn’t really think it through.

The book you mention sounds a lot like Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking. The book talks about reactive decision making and many on the left have used it as an attack of the President. Nevertheless, it has had quite the buzz for the last few months.

I also used to believe that every day should start with a good breakfast consisting of fatty meat, eggs, and milk, that smoking cigarettes made people look sexy, that a pint of stout would make my breast milk "stronger," that nothing would replace the horse, that wives’ property should belong to their husbands, that thalidomide was a good way to ease labor, that a bit of aspirin on a child’s gums was good for teething pain, that exercise was for "crazies," and that loyalty in the workplace would be rewarded.

Mrs. Schramm (glad to have you here by the way), other than the Thalidomyde, I knew there were reasons Peter speaks so highly of you.

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